Introducing the 2023 Bolt Rentals Safety Report

Jun 21, 2023

This blog gives you an overview of the 2023 Bolt Rentals Safety Report. Read the full report.

Since we launched Bolt’s rental vehicle service in 2018, safety has been the top priority in all aspects of our decision-making — from the design of our scooters and e-bikes to the development of new app features.

In this blog post, we’ll guide you through the main topics of the 2023 Rentals Safety Report. But we encourage you to read it in its entirety to gain a deeper insight into the world of safe Bolt scooter and e-bike rides.

Bolt’s Scooter Safety Pledge

In 2022, we were proud to publish Bolt’s Scooter Safety Pledge, which outlines how we support cities’ efforts in achieving Vision Zero — the elimination of all traffic fatalities and severe injuries.

We made our nine-point pledge specific to scooters because they’re still a new form of transport that invites the most questions about how they impact road safety, but the core principles apply to our shared e-bikes and cars as well.

However, to gain a deeper insight into our 2022 experience, let’s start by taking a closer look at the numbers.

2022 in numbers: what the data tells us

Bolt’s rental vehicle services continue to expand after 5 years, with 2022 bringing even more growth. We extended our rental services to over 260 cities in 25 European countries this year alone.

Safety remained our highest focus throughout this expansion as we implemented various new safety initiatives. As a result of these focused efforts: 

  • On scooters, we recorded only 5.55 major injuries per 1 million km ridden and 8.90 major injuries per 1 million rides.
  • And on our e-bikes — 4.60 major injuries per 1 million km ridden and 10.11 major injuries per 1 million rides.

We understand that even minor safety incidents affect our users and cities. While our main priority is eliminating severe injuries, we’ve been tracking incidents of all severities, and we’re proud that 99.997% of scooter rides ended safely without incident, while 99.995% of e-bike rides were incident-free.

Collisions with third parties — mostly involving motor vehicles

In the rare cases when accidents did happen, Bolt’s 2022 data across scooters and e-bikes shows that over 75% of collisions with third parties involved motor vehicles rather than pedestrians or other small vehicles like bikes, simultaneously leading to more severe injury outcomes.

This doesn’t come as a surprise since external research has demonstrated that cars are involved in 80% of crashes that lead to the death of a biker or scooter rider. 

Boosting our safety impact

Preventing drunk riding

Preventing intoxicated riding is one of the most important ways to keep scooter riders and pedestrians safe. That’s why the Bolt app alerts users about the potential risks when intoxication is most likely, such as on nights and weekends.

Throughout 2022, we conducted over 5.3 million tests globally, preventing over 180,000 potentially intoxicated rides.

Modals alerting users of the dangers of driving under the influence and reaction time test

Discouraging tandem riding 

Throughout 2022, we expanded the implementation of our patent-pending Tandem Riding Prevention System, which uses onboard sensors to detect and deter users from riding with multiple occupants on a single scooter.

Throughout the year, we sent over 180,000 push notifications globally to warn users that tandem riding poses a danger to riders and pedestrians.

To further discourage tandem riding, we also began rolling out a Group Rides Feature, which allows users to unlock up to 5 scooters or e-bikes from 1 Bolt account and ride safely in a group.

Reducing the night-time speed limit

High speed is one of the most critical factors contributing to scooter crashes. To help address this issue, Bolt partnered with local authorities to reduce the speed limit of our scooters in Tallinn, Estonia, from 25 km/h to 17 km/h on Friday and Saturday nights.

According to the Estonian Transport Administration, this led to a 20% reduction in scooter crashes.

Improving poor parking habits with Bolt’s Smart Parking 360

To understand whether poor scooter parking remains an issue, we used internal data and surveyed 23 European cities across 3 countries. Similarly to what we’ve observed, the survey revealed significant positive shifts in public perception of scooter parking.

To help drive this improvement, we’ve been implementing Bolt’s comprehensive Smart Parking 360 system, built on 5 core pillars explained below:

  1. Education and raising awareness: We encourage new riders to learn the basics on the Bolt website, in the Bolt app, or at an in-person training event.
  2. Parking infrastructure: We continuously collaborate with local municipalities to map no-parking areas, install parking racks, and introduce Bolt’s industry-exclusive charging docks where they’re most needed.
  3. Technological innovations: We’re rolling out our latest app-based parking verification feature, ParkAssist+, which successfully validates 99.9% of end-of-ride photos and provides users with instant feedback on their parking. During the initial testing phase, this new feature reduced poor parking cases in Stockholm by 69%.
  4. Local operations: Bolt Patrol is our on-street team that identifies and corrects improper scooter and e-bike parking. We designate their patrol routes based on a city’s requirements, targeting areas with a higher probability of incorrectly parked scooters. This approach has helped to reduce complaints regarding poor parking by 50% globally.
  5. Enforcement: 98% of our scooter and e-bike riders behave responsibly, and only 2% demonstrate consistently poor riding and parking practices. For these rare cases, Bolt recently developed the Reckless Rider Score to identify and penalise such users with an escalating penalty system.

Keeping all road users safe 

At Bolt, road safety is about equally protecting riders, pedestrians, and other vulnerable road users. That’s why in 2022, we partnered with RTB, a leading provider of acoustic technology for visually impaired people.

Bolt and RTB: helping visually impaired people move safely

To reduce the daily challenges faced by blind and visually impaired people, we teamed up with RTB to integrate Bolt scooters into their app, a Bluetooth-based system that communicates with external objects such as traffic lights, building entrances, public transport vehicles, roadworks sites, and now Bolt scooters.

When the user approaches an object equipped with a receiver, the object is recognised, and either the object or the user’s phone emits an audible signal or starts voice-controlled guidance to ensure the user can navigate safely.

During the testing process, 98% of users confirmed they’d use this feature in the future, so we’re excited to begin the roll-out soon.

IoT for preventive maintenance on scooters and e-bikes

Regular high-quality maintenance is critical to make sure all Bolt vehicles on the street are safe for use. We’re now introducing a system that detects potential maintenance issues before they become a problem.

Our Advanced Mobility Intelligence System continuously assesses how our scooters are used and predicts potential issues such as brake and tyre wear. By flagging potential issues before they arise, we can address them before they have any impact on our riders.

Safe and reliable vehicles for safe rides

Throughout 2022, we were thrilled to deploy over 20,000 of our latest, most durable scooter model, the Bolt 5.

This new model has slightly curved handlebars and a wider floorboard, offering users better grip and easy manoeuvring, along with a 12-inch front wheel and front suspension to improve control and comfort across all urban environments.

In addition to the Bolt 5 scooter, 15 European countries welcomed our new e-bike model with solid rear and front wheel drum brakes to help control speed efficiently, and puncture-proof pneumatic tyres for better grip and durability.

Customer Support: improving user experience and gathering data

In this year’s report, we also discussed how our Customer Support (CS) plays a key role in providing fast and reliable assistance if issues arise using Bolt products. 

The team’s also a critical source of data to understand issues our users face and how we can continually work to improve our services.

In 2022, we took significant steps to bolster data-gathering by establishing a unit within CS solely focused on investigating and responding to safety-related issues involving our rental vehicles.

This has given us an extra layer of confidence that we’re responding to safety issues with dedicated 24/7 expertise — and the data we collect is more precise than ever.

Here’s a glimpse of how the process works:

Bolt Drive — the safer alternative to private cars

While shared scooters and e-bikes provide users with fast and convenient ways to make short trips in urban areas, they’re not ideal for longer rides. And in 2021, we launched our car-sharing service, Bolt Drive, which has since expanded to multiple countries across Europe.

As with our shared scooters and e-bikes, we’ve taken steps to ensure this growth hasn’t come at the expense of safety.

In 2023, we commissioned TalTech to conduct a study comparing the safety of Bolt Drive cars in Tallinn, with general road safety statistics in Estonia. The study found Bolt Drive cars are involved in accidents resulting in serious injuries 27% less frequently than privately owned vehicles for several reasons:

  • Bolt Drive cars are at most 2 years old and considerably newer than the average Estonian vehicle, which is 13 years old. This means Bolt Drive cars feature more updated safety features compared to most cars on the road.
  • Reckless drivers can be warned about their behaviour or even banned (temporarily or permanently) from Bolt Drive.
  • Bolt carefully vets drivers, and Bolt Drive’s strictly reserved for seasoned drivers with a minimum of 1-year driving experience.

Looking ahead: what 2023 brings us

We have many exciting developments planned for the rest of 2023 and beyond, including the release of the Bolt 6, our latest in-house scooter model, which will be introduced in many cities later this year.

Bolt 6 scooter

Featuring one of the widest floorboards in the industry and swept handlebars, the scooter’s designed to help customers maintain a comfortable posture while riding. 

An underfloor battery, which keeps a low centre of gravity, translates to more stability and better weight distribution. Additionally, the Bolt 6 is equipped with suspension and a bigger 12-inch front wheel to help riders manage obstacles safely and comfortably.

Combined with enhanced sustainability features, such as its 70% recycled aluminium frame and 8-year lifespan, the Bolt 6 will set a new standard for shared e-scooters that delivers a top-notch user experience while helping cities achieve their transport and sustainability goals.

“Our new Bolt 6 scooter was created by our team of engineers to address the needs of cities and riders. Designing a scooter in-house gives us full control of software and hardware, enabling us to continuously upgrade the safety features that we provide to riders and pedestrians. 

Owning the full process of scooter development and production also means stricter quality control and higher safety standards. At the same time, we don’t overpay for supplier and manufacturer margins. This allows us to forward the cost savings to our customers through more affordable scooter rides.

Dmitri Pivovarov, Vice President of Rentals at Bolt

Ongoing partnership with cities

At Bolt, we believe that mutual dialogue with cities is critical to driving continuous safety improvement, which is why this is the first point of our Scooter Safety Pledge.

We welcome feedback from cities on Bolt’s performance, and at the same time, we think it’s important to provide input on what cities can do to ensure the safety of their residents.

First, in the short term, cities should consider reducing speed limits for motor vehicles in urban areas, as a wealth of research demonstrates that this simple step is a lifesaver. For example, according to the European Transport Safety Council, reducing the average speed of cars by just 1km/h would save 2100 lives in the EU annually.

Second, in the longer term, cities should invest in safe road infrastructure for micromobility. A study conducted in 93 cities across 6 European countries found that introducing shared scooters in cities with a high density of bike lanes didn’t increase traffic accidents. 

In other words, adopting shared scooters was shown to have zero negative impact on overall road safety in cities already committed to providing safe infrastructure for micromobility!

To learn more about Bolt’s safety initiatives or our collaboration with cities, contact us at

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